Orcas Island, WA

Moran State Park Learning Center

Moran State Park is the fourth largest State Park in Washington State. With miles of trails, a myriad of campsites, and a tower on the top of Mt Constitution that allows you to view three mountain ranges from its vista. Additionally, the park boasts one of the highest visitor counts in the entire Washington State Park’s system, with an exemplary educational program supported by the Friends of Moran State Park.

Patano Studio began working with Washington State Parks in 2016 when Moran State Park discovered that its original Summit Learning Center was beyond repair and functionally obsolete. Once the decision was made to replace the building, Patano Studio collaborated with parks and the Orcas Island community to envision a phased project that would fix their accessibility issues, create more exhibit space, and increase capacity for visitation

Phase 1 of the project, which was completed in 2017, includes; a brand new comfort station containing three ADA compliant restrooms as well as upgrades the parking and site utilities.

Phase 2 of the project; a feasibility study conducted by Patano Studio for an adjoining interpretive center; produced the plans and renderings that were necessary for state budget requests. The project successfully received its funding from the state legislature and is now moving into final design development.

Throughout the design processes, Patano Studio drew inspiration from Moran State Park’s distinctive Civilian Conservation Corps (CCC) architectural legacy. The most recent design iteration for the project highlights a contextual roof form and views into the forest from a glass-paned pavilion that houses the Interpretive Content. While experiencing the interpretive exhibits the visitor is able to stay connected to the environment with nature visible in all directions. A large deck to the south provides outdoor space for events and for a quiet rest. Storage and bathrooms are integrated into the design – with the ADA restrooms were constructed in Phase 1.